Todays Tales

Today’s theme is people in football who, well, really don’t help themselves. Historically, you might consider Joey Barton to head up this list – on one hand, Joey craves being thought of as a football intellect. On the other hand, he likes to put his cigar out in a team mate’s eye. Mario Ballotelli would probably get selected if this list became an XI – Mario wants to win the Ballon d’Or one day, but by the same token likes to let off fireworks in his bathroom.

Anyway, let’s talk about David Moyes, shall we? I had my concerns about Moysey when he took the Sociedad job and didn’t try to learn Spanish. That would tell me he might have been one of the many Brits living in Spain and expecting them to change for him, a man with quite ancient views perhaps? Having led his Sunderland team to relegation, something that all other Sunderland managers no matter how bad they have been have avoided, you would have thought Moyesy would be keeping his head down, not drawing attention to himself and not giving anyone reason to call him up in front of the FA and/or sack him. You’d think that, wouldn’t you? So maybe telling a female BBC reporter who was, let’s be honest, just doing her job that “she might get a slap” next time she dares enquire as to how bad Dave is at his job isn’t the best road for the beleaguered manager to go down? It looks like his views of women in the workplace are as out-dated as his tactics.

Next up is Luke Shaw who, according to several United teammates also does not help himself in the eyes of Jose. All Jose wants Shaw to do is buck up his ideas and show him he is worth being picked at left-back ahead of Ashley Young. Ashley Young for crying out loud! A right winger, last time he was good. Not a left back, never. It shouldn’t be too hard for Shaw to do it right, should it? Gary Neville weighed in saying Shaw’s attitude was fine, but his fitness was rubbish – something LvG had suggested last season also.

Eden Hazard hasn’t helped himself today by dropping rather unsubtle hints that he fancies a move to Real Madrid – mind you, is that what he said when his quote got filed under “massive hint”? Surely most players would fancy a move to Real Madrid, even those playing at Chelsea. Still, the done thing in this age is never, ever, ever suggest you are anything other than 1000% committed to the club paying to stupid money to run around kicking a ball for them.

Ronald Koeman also rarely helps himself. Having spent all season looking like he would rather be managing anywhere than Everton and hanging around by the phone waiting for Barcelona to ring, someone has hurt his feelings. Yes, Ronald feels the criticism Everton have got following their Merseyside derby no-show is a little harsh. And that has upset him. And the only way he can get over it is a weekend trip to the Camp Nou. Speaking of the Merseyside derby, Ross Barkley won’t be getting an Easter Egg from Dejan Lovren, that’s for sure.

Finally, former Mexico striker Nery Castillo, who may or may not have played in England as I have not been bothered to check, has come opened up an angling shop in Greece to occupy himself in retirement. No punchlines, no snide remarks, it just made me smile for once.